The Carolina Panthers Have Installed A New Aruba Gigabit Wi-Fi Network In Their Bank Of America Stadium To Heighten The Fan Experience. (Photo: Business Wire)

Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company (NYSE: HPE), today announced that the Carolina Panthers have installed a new Aruba Gigabit Wi-Fi network to bring fans an improved, connected stadium experience and streamline operations for stadium vendors.

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The Carolina Panthers have installed a new Aruba Gigabit Wi-Fi network in their Bank of America Stad ...

The Carolina Panthers have installed a new Aruba Gigabit Wi-Fi network in their Bank of America Stadium to heighten the fan experience. (Photo: Business Wire)

With fans bringing an increasing number of mobile devices into Bank of America stadium, the Panthers' organization recognized that their network needed an overhaul. "Our existing network couldn't keep up with our fans' needs nor the density requirements we had," said James Hammond, Director of Information Technology for the Carolina Panthers. "We know the in-stadium experience has to surpass at-home game watching for fans to continue coming to games. It was clear that we needed an infrastructure upgrade in order to deliver the kind of connected stadium experience fans expect."

Hammond noted that the stadium's vendors, who rely on the network for their operations, also needed more Wi-Fi coverage and bandwidth, and were eager to see connectivity improvements.

As part of the organization's motto of "Committed to Excellence", the Panthers undertook a three-phase upgrade plan. The first piece of the plan was completed last off-season when the Panthers rebuilt their DAS system to provide better cellular coverage in the stadium. Part two of the plan was the Wi-Fi upgrade for which the Panthers evaluated Ruckus, Cisco, and Extreme before choosing Aruba. Working with partner AmpThink for the deployment, the Panthers installed over 1,220 Aruba 802.11ac access points in a stadium-tested, under-the-seat deployment and Aruba Mobility Controllers. They also implemented AirWave network management to optimize network performance and quickly resolve any connectivity issues, as well as the ClearPass Policy Manager for securely authenticating mobile devices. ClearPass also delivers the PCI compliance required for stadium vendors and their many PoS and IoT mobile devices.

The first three home games of the season have already demonstrated the benefits of the Aruba Mobile First Platform. Over 20,000 unique devices/users per game have connected to the network with traffic hitting a total peak of more than 3 Gbps, with additional capacity to support well over 20 Gbps.

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